San Sả Hồ is a native town that belongs to Hoàng Liên National Park. Leaning on the massive Hoàng Liên Range, San Sả Hồ is situated 2 kilometers away from Sapa downtown. The town holds in itself five different villages, which include Cát Cát, Sín Chải A, Sín Chải B, Ý Lình Hồ 1 and Ý Lình Hồ 2 with a population of over 3.000 dwellers, most of which belong to the H’mong ethnic community. Why is the town perfect for your Sapa homestay tour? Let’s find out!
San Sả Hồ Town
San Sả Hồ and its topography highlights
According to a Sapa tour guide whom we had a chance to talk to during our previous trips, San Sả Hồ has a literal meaning of “three converging currents”. One of them starts from the upper region of the Silver Fall. Once moving down to the Cát Cát Hydroelectric Dam, the first flow meets the Golden Stream which departs from Hoàng Liên Range that altogether join with the third one coming from Thìn Hồ.
San Sả Hồ is famous for the sensational Ô Quy Hồ, the toughest and largest curving pass all over the Northwest. Sitting on Highway 4D, cutting the Hoàng Liên Range and linking two cities of Lào Cai and Lai Châu, Ô Quy Hồ was rewarded with another name known as Hoàng Liên Sơn as crossing the magnificent Hoàng Liên Range. Other than that, the pass is also referred to as the “Pass of cloud” due to the fact that its peak is all-time covered in clouds, no matter it is summer or winter time.
Ô Quy Hồ Pass
Furthermore, San Sả Hồ is an ideal hide-out if you tend to look for the best homestays in Sapa. Ethnic villages such as Cát Cát, Sín Chải, and Ý Lình Hồ are home to the H’mong ethnic groups with the stilt houses scattering all over the slopes of the hills and enclosed by the infinite terraced fields and brooks that murmur down through low hills. Taking a Sapa trekking tour during daytime and joining in the dance moves and folklore songs when the Sun is out is what travelers love every time coming back.
H’mong people at a flea market
When the town gains its reputation as a paradise of chayote
Even though chayote can be planted across the country, there are not many places that give chayote a chance to grow fully and reach the best quality like Sapa does especially once rewarded such good natural conditions by Mother Nature with cool and fresh air all year round. Accordingly, when setting foot on this venue, visitors are able to contemplate the vast chayote gardens chasing up to the summit. Viewing from afar, the chayote gardens look exactly like giant green carpets. One unique thing you can learn when visiting San Sả Hồ is that locals come up with an idea of maintaining the big chayote roots for another making of frames next year. Every day, the chayote garden owners here equip a papoose on their back and start climbing to the peak of the mountain, collecting chayote and following downhill to move the harvest back home on motorbikes.
Infinite chayote gardens
A large frame of chayote in San Sả Hồ gives out several tons of fruits a year. An average price of a kilogram costs only VND 5000. At the flea markets, you can spot out chayote packed in the papooses of H’mong, Red Dao, and Giáy ladies and sold at the open market. Chayote at San Sả Hồ is highly famed for its sweetness, softness and pure taste. A piece of boiled chayote still remains its initial fresh greenish, which is able to bring a crunchiness in taste. The best way to consume chayote like a local is to scatter a pinch of sesame salt.
San Sả Hồ – Chayote paradise
Sapa homestay tour seems to be a smart idea if you need to make a great escape from the hustle and bustle of the noisy city. Coming to San Sả Hồ, its fresh air and serene vibe will surely make you want to stay here and not to come back.